Monday, October 16, 2017

Elthos Patreon - Asking for Advice

Hi Hi... I have my Patreon pretty much set up ... but I'm worried about my Rewards. The problem I think I have is that I'm offering things that will consume my time in a way that if I get success with the Patreon I'll wind up buried with Patreon related rewards rather than working on the core project. I'm wondering if anyone else has faced this issue, and how you work it out? I could offer other things besides time intensive things, but I'm not sure what would work best.

The challenge for me is that I'm a startup with very limited resources, so I have to economize as much as possible while I bootstrap my operation. So one thing that doesn't cost money to give is time... but of course, time is our most precious commodity, especially if you're an inventor / innovator / entrepreneur who is struggling to launch an actual business, but needs help along the way to get everything up and off the ground. It's not easy, especially if you're doing so on a shoe string budge in order to avoid "Imperial entanglements" (Venture Capital). So Patreon seems like a wonderful possibility. But I realize I have to be able to offer something that my patrons feel is worthwhile, and I suspect that "working on the project of my dreams - the Elthos RPG Mythos Machine Web Application" might or might not suffice on it's own. So of course I'm on the hunt for ways to offer things to my patrons that are worthwhile. But not things that would inhibit progress on the main project by eating time each week. And the more successful the Patreon, of course, the more time would get eaten. So it's a tough call. But I do have stuff... I do artwork (which takes time, but I do it on off moments when I'm in between tasks), and I have quite a bit of written material in story form that are actual play stories from my game ... written up in prose without OCC comments quite faithfully to the adventure as it happened. I think it's a fascinating view of an Elthos game, and quite funny in places (I'm blessed with funny players). I have some things like readings of Lord Dunsany which I've made a couple of and they came out reasonably nice. In other words, when I'm not programming (which most of the time) then I'm free to do some creative work like that. So... given all this... any suggestions on how to structure my patreon in terms of rewards would be great. I think I'm just having a mental block on this. The answer is probably obvious. Anyway, if you have any thoughts, please let me know. Thanks!

Anyway, if you have time and care to offer any thoughts please visit my patreon page at Elthos Patreon. So, if anyone is willing to take a look and offer any advice on it, I'd really appreciate it! Thanks!!


Sunday, October 08, 2017

Future of Story Telling (FoST) Expedition Report

The Future of Story Telling (FoST) is a fascinating experience held on Staten Island in NY (Oct 6 - 8).  As a Gamemaster who is looking to the future of the hobby in relation to Professional Gamemastering I was curious to see what new developments are in the works for VR and AR, and see if anyone at all is considering tools for Gamemasters.  I also wanted to meet people and plant some seeds for future reference there. Unfortunately, I only had one day that I could attend and that was Friday Oct. 6.  So my intrepid and lovely Adventure-Associate, Ling, and I hoofed it over yonder Verrezano Bridge ($17 toll, omg!), and within 2 hours we were at the event, starting at 11am.  We stayed until they closed at 6pm and we certainly had only sampled about 1/3 of what was there to see.

Object Normal
David Lobser
https://www.objectnormal.com/

The Birds!  Ok this was totally 100% fun.  It was certainly and by far the most creative use of VR I saw there, and the most entertaining.  The actresses were absolutely adorable, and Ling and I now have our 'secret' bird calls which we will use periodically going forward as secret passwords.  Hehe.  Anyway, it was a lovely time, and I totally recommend this one, but sign up early!  It gets booked fast, and we were very lucky to squeeze in at the end of the festival day when we replaced a couple of no-shows.  Lucky!



TwoBit Circus
http://twobitcircus.com/

A game where one person gets inside the VR and plays the Monster trying to protect his treasure from the thieving adventurers (the other three players).  I didn't get inside the Monster (my girlfriend did, though), but I'm told it was fun ... you reach out and grab the little thieves with your giant claws and give them a squeeze before they can get your gold back to their ships.

Quantum Interface
http://quantuminterface.com/

Innovation in Headgear design.  The idea was to find a solution to the vertigo experienced by many VR users.  It worked nicely, and I got the hang of it immediately, though my girlfriend who isn't a computer gamer by any stretch of the imagination, and with little experience, was able to get the idea after a few tries.  I'd say it's pretty intuitive once you get the idea, but the initial WTF may be steep for some.

Mech Bird
http://mechbird.fr/
Tatiana Vileca do Santos

This was a very artsy installation in the VR Realm.  At the point where I pressed the button and flipped the room so I was on the ceiling I "got" the Vertigo Effect.  Woah.  Now I know what they mean. It can be really disorienting. I tried it several times and each time the visual effect was so strong I almost fell over.  The Vertigo nausia lasted for another 20 minutes after I left it.  That said, the scene was interesting and very Salvatore Dali-esque.



Apora Gen
http://Aporagen.com
Roman Miletitch

This one is probably the most interesting from the Professional GM Society point of view.  He had an installation where you draw a scene on paper with colored pens and each color represents a type of terrain.  Blue is water, Green is forest, Red is lava, and yellow is a barrier of some kind.  When you draw it on the map an overhead scanner reads the map and automatically adds the terrain in the VR World where people in headsets can interact with it immediately.  So for GMs who want the freedom to create their own Worlds on the fly and have players in an Interactive VR / AR environment, there may well be something to this.  I spoke with Roman and pitched him my idea for GM tools and he was interested.  I will follow up with him soon.

8i
https://8i.com/
Layne Button

This one was a short show with a surrealistic touch to it.  Spaceship was involved.  You stand on a platform in a VR helmet and watch a vista of desert with some musicians and a tornado / storm heading straight for you and ... it was weird and interesting.  It's a mixed reality combination where the platform rumbles, and you feel like you're moving a bit.  The audio was great, and the visuals spectacular. But my girlfriend's video got stuck about 80% of the way through, no one knew, and she didn't figure it out until after ... she thought that was part of the show.   So like for many of these installation, I should mention, there were glitches along the way.  Most of them felt like DYI projects at a Maker Fair, with the exception of a few that were done by large companies like Microsoft.

Starship Commander
Sophie Write
http://human-interact.com/

This was a fun game using AI with voice and VR Helmet directional controls.  You can talk with your AI co-pilot, as questions, and go on the mission.  You fight space gooks, and destroy a battle station.  It was fun, but ... of course ... the AI was not that great, and the co-pilot didn't really understand what I was asking and so after a while I gave up on that part and just ran the mission.  You use your VR helmet to look at enemies and the ship automatically shoots down whatever you can keep your target cross-hairs on for long enough.  Fun stuff, but not really quite there yet.  Proto-type level.

Mashup Machine
http://mashupmachine.io/
Ben Cole

This one was also another potential GM-Tool candidate, though it would need some substantial resources to bring it to bear on our line of thinking.  What it does currently is allow the user to dynamically create virtual scenes like a game, via interaction with the Mashup Machine's AI interface.  It prompts and guides you based on some questions both you and the AI ask one another, and the result is a series of video game scenes.  The AI gets smarter as more people add their thoughts and concepts to the scene creation tool. This concept could be very helpful for GMs who are in the business of dynamic story generation.  Very!  But it has a ways to go from here to there, and no budget to take it in our direction as of now.  Still though - very worthwhile to keep an eye on this one, and ping them on GM Tools development news.

Hololens Exhibit / Show
https://www.deeptale.com/
Tero Pankalainen

For this one you wear hololens headset and watch 3D movie that takes place around you.  It looks very vivid and is AR, not VR, so you can still see everything else around you as well.  But the superimposition of items and characters looks very clear and distinct, and I'd even say "solid".  The story was a bit silly, but the graphics demonstrate the potential.  I could see this being used for AR style games where GMs build maps and players interact with them around the living room table, just like a miniatures map but with obviously far more potential and flexibility.  This could be something to poke at further in the future, Pro-GMs.

Feel the Night - Exhibit in VR
https://JauntVR.com
About JauntVR

The Microsoft Booth was demonstrating a couple of VR systems.  The headset was very smooth feeling, and light weight.  The sensory aspect was also smooth and I didn't get the Vertigo feeling from other installations, but that may be because the action in this one was slow.  But still I got the feeling that the motion in the VR was calibrated to go smoothly so you wouldn't likely get a sudden movement that disorients you.  Hard to explain.  Anyway, the show was interesting in a very basic simply dumb down almost nothing to do sort of way.  Or I should say rather that the artwork of the scene was pretty, though there wasn't much to interact with.  You play a giant who takes light poles from a local town in the desert and lift them up to the air and let go.  They then explode into streaks of starlight, or something.  "Returning the lights to the stars", the assistant of the booth explained, awkwardly.

MindShow
https://mindshow.com/

We stumbled across MindShow, which allows you to jump inside any of a number of VR Characters inside a scene and control them.  The controls are really intuitive and easy to pick up, though a bit klunky to actually use.  Not terrible, but the interface could be a little bit easier to handle.  Even so, the concept, if not the implementation, is certainly compelling from the Pro-GMs point of view as this shows how it would be possible to jump inside of NPCs and play them.  All that would be needed is a live GM'd virtual world to do so in.

Here's the resulting video - I'm the cat.



We also roamed around the the Tent City, which had another 30 or 40 demos, most of which were booked solid for the weekend already.  I would imagine that since we showed up on a Friday we were among the lucky ones who had a relatively light crowd and so we could actually get into a lot of demos without too much waiting.  Even so we couldn't get into the more popular ones, such as Tree, wherein you go inside a VR character of a Seed in the forest and grow yourself to become the tallest tree around.  I would have liked to try that one as it came with "Smell-a-Vision" as well (a girl with a spritzer sprays you with odors of the forest while you play.

We pass through the "VR for Good" tent which has demonstrations of various VR / AR applications used for social justice type purposes, mostly regarding holocaust survivors of various ethnicities around the world, deforestation, and the like.  Not sure how necessary VR is for those messages, but the demos were nevertheless compelling and do tug on the heart-strings.

The food court was good, but don't wait to hurl yourself into the crowd there at noon to 1:30.  If you show up at 2, like we did, you will find slim, but tasty pickings.

The campus / park on which the event takes place is the Snug Botanical Gardens, a place worth seeing on it's own anyway for the beautiful architecture and lovely gardens.











In Conclusion

From my point of view as the representative of the Professional Gamemaster Society, this was very interesting, though I have to admit, I didn't feel like I'm seeing much movement in our direction at all. In fact, overall, I have to say that most of the efforts still feel like Works-In-Progress more than finished products, and the concepts are fascinating, but I didn't see a single one that would be useful for us GMs out of the box.  Of course that said, I do think I planted some seeds of thought, got some really wide eyed looks, and heard a lot of this comment, "Wow, you're ideas are about two levels above where we're at at this point, but we'd love to participate in something like that when we get further along."  So there was interest, but no one has even imagined the potential for live GM'd virtual Worlds out there.

Which is why, once again, I recommend interested people get going with the tweeting, posting, commenting, recommending and insisting on such tools.  Because as it happens, if we don't pester these guys about this idea, they will follow the usual train - which is to create Static-Story VR / AR games that have absolutely zero to do with Live-GM'd Virtual Worlds and pretty much leave our vision out in the cold.  Why?  Simply because they never thought of the idea, and therefore have no plans to build anything along these lines at all.  So if you want to see the kinds of tools that help you with GMing in VR / AR environments starting to pop up in our future, it seems we collectively need to start putting the word out - "We need these kinds of tools, please, and pronto!"  The future is in our direction, in theory, but only if we successfully push for it.  Otherwise we'll all just be playing VR versions of DOOM for the next 100 years.  And that would be a crying shame, imo.

The FoST is a really fascinating view into the future of VR / AR.  Let's make sure that we are just as much a part of that future as everyone else! Tweeeeeeeet!  Tweeeeeeeet!


Thursday, September 28, 2017

There Be Dragons

In response to someone's recent query "What level is ok to throw a dragon at the party?", I have this reply ...

I don't throw stuff at my party, typically. I create a world in which exist many creatures who settle themselves into certain locations and do their thing. I then let the party roam around as they will exploring and adventuring. If they are careful they watch and plan, and peer around corners, listen at doors, ask the locals for information, and try not to walk into a dragon's lair... unless they are prepared for it. So I have a few dragons here and there. So far they've not directly confronted any of them. They could ... but they don't because ... well ...Dragon! That's how I do it. What I don't do is try to manage what level encounter is appropriate for the party as that is just 1) waaay too much work for me, and 2) puts all the burden on me for any TPKs if things go south ("You threw a F*cking DRAGON at us!") ... etc. Nope. Not for me. I have a world. It lives and breaths and in between games I roll to see what the major NPCs and Monsters are doing, based on what their motives, knowledge and resources are. And then when it comes time for the game I let the party play smart or stupid as they wish, and if they encounter the Dragon - cool. If they avoid the Dragon - cool. But throwing stuff at the party and trying to mange what level encounter is "safe enough but not too safe" just never worked for me. I prefer to have a world, and let them live or die in it by their own decisions, not mine. I consider myself referee rather than story-director.


Thursday, September 21, 2017

The Animal Monks Of Whitewode

There are a few Characters that didn't find their way into the Whitewode Campaign proper, but have been lurkers in the dark corners of things, and actors behind the scenes of the main Campaign.  I think I'll just post a few of them here... Don't tell my players. ;)


*SPOILER ALERT*
If you're one of my players who doesn't like to "cheat" by seeing things your character didn't encounter (Chris), then avert your eyes now... 

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Ok now here we go. As some of you who have been following my game story for some time may already know, I have animals in Elthos whose Royal families can transform into humanoid form, which is kind of the lingua franca of all (or most) animal forms in the Elthos Universe. This started out years ago with the Insect Lords way back when. First my players encountered the Aphid Men.  Then the Ant Men. Then the Locust Men.  Then there was the Insect War.  All quite fun.

Well, after all this time my players have finally encountered the cavern in which dwell the Mammal Lords.  Many of the The Royal Lines of the Mammals are supreme martial artists (from whom humans learned various Martial Arts Styles), and when they want to, they can take on Human form. In this form they can interact in the language of the humans, to some degree, some better some worse, and some don't bother at all (like the Cat Men, who just couldn't be bothered to learn the human tongue, of course).  Following are some sketches of a few of the Animal Monks from the area in and below and around Whitewode, and the caverns and lands round about.  There are plenty more, but these are the one's I've sketched most recently.

Iron Bear Monk in Repose


Black Jackal Monk Preparing to enter the Bow Stance


Iron Bear Monk with Staff

Rhino Monk Preparing Crushing Fist

Well that's them, thar. Pretty fun. Anthropomorphic Super-Monks. :)

By the way, we are at the tail end of the Free Open Beta. If you want to try out the Mythos Machine now would be the right time to do it. Get a free account, and start playing around with it. If you have any questions or comments please let me know! You can contact me through the Elthos.com website or email me at
ElthosRPG @ Elthos.com.

Also, I think I should mention that I am hoping to be able to continue working on the Mythos Machine going forward. However, my resources for that are running thin. So if you want to help please hop on over to Elthos, click on the Shop in the Menu and buy some Swag! We have cool T-Shirts and stuff. Or you can buy a the Elthos RPG Core Rules Book, or even just make a direct Contribution. You can also join my Patreon here: VBWyrde on Patreon!  And as always, thank you so much for your help, feedback and support everyone!  It's been great!!

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

New Proto-Worlds Are Coming

Well, it's been a long few weeks of stress.  My sister and nephew are living just outside of Houston.  Need I say more?  Oh, and my dad and step-mother are living in Boca Raton, FL.  So ... there you have it.  Bit of a nervous wreck here.

But nevertheless, the work goes on.  I am a World Weaver, and my love of this is strong.  :)

So lately I'm working on Proto-Worlds for the Mythos Machine.  It's coming along well. Right now I'm revamping the Fantasy World with a better set of characters and adventures.  It's fun.  Making progress.  Here are some character and place sketches related to Griswold ...

The Lovely Marya

Evil Minion

Arch Villain

Arch Villain's Castle on Iron Mountain

The Sullen Stooge

Master Feng Liu - World Traveler

Secret Fortress (don't tell)

Secret Map (shhhhhh!)
So things are coming along.  Mythos Machine has picked up a bunch of new Beta Testers lately, and that's been great, and they're providing incredibly helpful feedback.  So things are improving rapidly.

The latest improvements are:

New Bulk Edit Screens for Weapons, Armors, Races and Classes.  I will be adding more as requests come in, but those are the most important ones, and they're up and running nicely.

Bug Fixes - found a few nasty critters lurking in the shadows. Squashed.

Fantasy Proto-World - coming along nicely.

Cosmic Horror Proto-World - also coming along nicely with the help of Yicheng Liu who came up with the idea and agreed to put the first brush to it.  I'm really impressed with what he's done, and collaborating with him on getting things tooled right so it can serve as another Proto-World for new GMs.

Modern Proto-World - That one is coming along ok, I think, but I'm not 100% sure. The author is working on it, but I think he wants to get more done before sharing it.  He's been a fabulous Beta Tester and I'm really looking forward to seeing what he's come up with.

Western Proto-World - this one only needs a little bit more fine tuning, and is probably the most complete one of the lot at this point.  Fun stuff.

Anyway, so that's progress for you.  Super busy.

If you want to participate in the Free Open Beta, now's your chance.  It won't last much longer.  I'm looking for feedback, things to improve and polish with the site.  Get your licks in and help shape the RPG Software Tools of tomorrow, today.

Go to https://Elthos.com and create a Mythos Machine account for yourself.

Build your own World.

Tuesday, September 05, 2017

Alex Pe on Creating One Shots

As those of you following my posts have probably figured out by now - I tend to run long term Campaigns. One year would be a super short Campaign for me. Whitewode, for example, started 2.75 years ago. Still going strong, though we're nearing the climax.

But lately I've been thinking about trying my hand at One Shots online. And it occurred to me that I'm in need of advice on the topic. So who did I turn to? The grand master of the One Shot, Alex Pe, of course. And this is what he said:

"Have a good core idea and theme. Don't overprepare. Start at the end, then do the beginning. Everything in between is not that important."

He also sent along this video on how to create One Shots:



Thanks Alex!

Ref: Original Thread on FB (you might need to join the One Shot Group to read the OP).

Thursday, August 24, 2017

On Elthos Elkron Alignment Correspondences

Just a something I felt like talking about on a lark, with my camera settings on "Weird Color" for the fun of it. The discussion has to do with how I use my Elkron Alignment Correspondence system and how it works basically. Impromptu, and a bit scattered, perhaps, but nevertheless does have the basic idea layed out. I hope it will suffice to give people an idea of one of the background concepts behind the Elthos Project, and what the potential value of the Elthos Tarot Deck might be.



And now for Part 2, wherein I answer my friend Chris' questions from the first video...

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

A Bit About The Elkron of Elthos for GMs

I have left the Elkron and their workings deliberately vague because I don't want to create too much Setting for the Mythos Machine. The point of the project is to encourage other people to use their own creativity. So the Elkron are there as a framework, more than as individual beings with histories. How GMs handle them in the future is something I shall be very curious to see.

That said, there are some rules to them.

I will try to give them to you in the order of importance I think they deserve (you may wind up disagreeing, and that's ok).

1. Each Elkron is the Embodiment / Avatar / Reflection of one of the 12 Alignments.

2. There is a table of correspondences for the Elkron, and it lists each Elkron's corresponding symbols ... plants, trees, animals, colors, gems, flowers, musical notes, and so on. These are used by the GM to build symbolic references in their World that only the Sages are likely to notice or understand.

3. The Elkron are divided into two major groups... the Celestials who are in the Heavens (Constellations and Planets), and those that dwell in the Realm of the Id (the Jungian Archetypes of the Tarot). Each Elkron has both aspects, so there is an upper-world and an lower-world aspect to each Elkron. In addition both groups, the Celeistials and the Archetypes, have an inner circle of 12 members, and an equal number of outer circle members. These correspond with the Titans and the Olympians... the Old Gods and the Young Gods. The Constellations and the Archetypes that correspond to them are the Outer Circle or Elder Elkron. The rest are the Inner Circle or Young Elkron.

4. Each Elkron has a Throne. Their interplay is the original Game of Thrones.

5. There is a game that the Elkron Play. I have some rules for it but haven't play tested it yet. We can skip lightly over this for now, but I want to explain what the game is like. There are Ages. Starting with the Dawn Age where the Elkron Incarnate and create the World. The start with a certain amount of Kismet and use that to fashion the world to suit their plans. Different alliances can occur, depending on circumstance.

After the Dawn Age comes another wherein the Elkron create the Races of the World. The Good Elkron will create Good Races, etc. They also plant the Seeds of Destiny, which are Holy Quests.

Another Age is called the Age of Heroes. This is where the Elkron step back and watch how things transpire. By this point the Elkron have spent most of their Kismet on building the World and creating the Seeds of Destiny. The Heroes are there to fulfill the Quests. Whenever a Quest is fulfilled the Elkron who created it gains Kismet, according to a multiple of how much they spent to create it, which relates to how complicated or difficult it is. So the Elkron gamble during the Dawn Age that their Heroes will fulfill their Quests and allow them to regain their Kismit. Because they are going to need it.

The final Age is called The End of Ages, and it is the War of the Elkron that will be the calamity of the Universe, and end the World. The Elkron who have regained their Kismet fight it out to determine which of them will be the Ruler of the next Universe. The Ruler of the Elkron's alignment is what stamps the Universe with it's initial Kismet, and sets everything in motion (setting the base Alignment of that Universe).

Anyway, I don't expect to get around to this game soon, but the idea is that a group of Elthos GMs get together for a month or so before they create a Shared World. They each play one to three Elkron, and set up the Races, and spend Kismet, and create Seeds of Destiny. When the Dawn Ages are completed and the Races created and all the terrain is built, then it's time for the Age of Heroes to begin. The GMs then invite their Players to Gen Characters and those are the Heroes who will try to fight it out.

The purpose of this is to help the GMs create a back story that makes sense, and is also part of a game the GMs themselves are playing with each other.

I see this is a phase III thing. But I also thought it would help you to understand the Elkron a little better to hear about it.

As for how to create the Elkron... it's up to you for your world. Just allow that each Elkron represents and Alignment, and those Alignments associate to certain Philosophies.

Here's the list of Elkron:
Elkron    Zodiac
-------   ----
El   Good
Scelus    Evil
Fas       Law
Kaos      Chaos
Aer       Air
Rhea      Earth
Aestus    Fire
Oceanus   Water
ASHKORAH  ARIES
OMRI      TAURUS
SHAVARA   GEMINI
ANATH     CANCER
PALAMIR   LEO
MINVAR    VIRGO
AMAYA     LIBRA
OBITUS    SCORPIO
SARTOR    SAGITTARIUS
ELVAL     CAPRICORN
EAVOR     AQUARIUS
ELMINIR   PISCES
GORUND    MARS
ELBEN     ELKOR
HERMIVAR  MERCURY
LUNA      MOON
ELDRIK    SUN
ELTHOS    EARTH
LILANU    VENUS
LETUM     PLUTO
VALANIR   JUPITER
KARNAT    SATURN
MINA      URANUS
MEROVIUS  NEPTUNE

Here are the Philosophic Viewpoints of the Alignments

[N] - Neutral
[C] - Chaos
[L] - Law
[G] - Good
[E] - Evil

[N] – : "There are many Elkron of Power, Cunning and Wisdom."

[C] – : "There is no Elkron; every one is for themselves."

[C-G] – : "There are Chaotic Good Elkron; the ultimate attainment is to be free."

[C-G-N] – : "There are only Good Elkron; man’s purpose is to create art and live free."

[G-C] – : "There are Elkron, but men must rule their own affairs by reason."

[G] – : "There is one Almighty Elkron, the King of the Universe; Seek Love."

[G-L] – : "There are Elkron; man is to work for the Good and obey the King."

[G-L-N] – : "There are Elkron; man’s place is to be serious, able and Just."

[L-G] – : "There are Elkron; man’s place is to obey the Laws of the Empire."

[L] – : "There is no Elkron, only laws of nature; mans place is to learn them."

[L-E] – : "There is Hades; man’s place is to obey the Emperor and die."

[L-E-N] – : "There are evil Elkron; man’s place is to obey the Emperor no matter what."

[E-L] – : "There are evil Elkron; man is to obey the cruel and suffer."

[E] – : "There are only Evil Elkron; man’s place is to serve and die."

[E-C] – : "There are no Elkron; man’s place is to serve the Community and fear."

[C-E-N] – : "There are no Elkron; man’s place is to overthrow the Elite."

[C-E] – : "There is no Elkron; every moment should be lived for pleasure."

I hope this helps. I'd say if you have any questions feel free to ask ... but ... I do want people to do their own thinking about this for their own worlds so I'm inclined to give this much to World Weavers and then let them run wild. :)

Here's a diagram to help you see the upper and lower aspects of the Elkron...


Also note - the Elkron live on the Celestial Island of Elthos (in my World), and the there are 24 Thrones ... there is an inner circle of mountains called the Dragon's Teeth, and an outer cirlce called the Dragon's Spine. On 24 of these mountains in ancient temples along inaccessible ridges are the 24 Thrones upon which the Elkron sit. From these Thrones they converse with one another, and observe the lands of their child races, and their heroes, below.

Another view ... this is a cutaway view of the Celestial Island ...


The connecting thread between all Worlds is the Alignment system. Through that permeate the manifestations of the Elkron in their myriads of Universes. The only thing that doesn't change is that there is Good and Evil, Law and Chaos at the root of all things. That is the foundation and metaphysical constant of the Elthos Multiverse.

Here's another diagram that shows the Alignment relationships to various political philosophies...


Also note that at the top of the post you can see the Elthos Tarot backface of the cards which shows the Celestial Island Map... that shows which Elkron are where, what their Associations with each other are by position, element (air, earth, water, and fire), and their Alignment positions.  That has served me quite well over the years.  And once when I got lost in an interdimensional time-rift by accident, the card was useful in helping me to navigate back to earth in the 21st Century.  So keep a card with you... never know when you might need it.

Anyway, the way the Alignments work in the game itself is that as Characters do things they get evaluated by both their Action and their Motive.  Between these two the Action determines the Law-Chaos value (an integer between -6 and 6), and the Motive determines the Good-Evil value (an integer between -6 and 6).  So as Characters do things in the World for different reasons their Alignment changes accordingly.  As GM I usually consult with the Players to find out what their Characters Motives were for given actions if it wasn't obvious, but Actions are a bit more deterministic.  The Mythos Machine interface provides a way to note Alignment changes in the Experience Gains Screen.  The result is that 1) Character Alignment is not fixed - it changes according to what the Players do with their Characters, and 2) Character Alignment changes can be tracked and shown over time - which is very cool, though not a feature that is implemented visibly in the Mythos Machine as such, yet.  It will be... but only after other more pending development is finished up.

At some point I will publish more about the Elkron once the project's Phase I is complete (pretty soon now), but for now, for Gamemasters using the Mythos Machine at this stage of the Elthos Project Development, this is probably good enough to get you going.

To see the 24 Archetype-Celestial Elkron you can view them here:

Elthos Tarot Deck ... coming soon to a POD service near you.

Cheers, and have fun with it.

Monday, August 07, 2017

When the Players Don't Show Up

I saw a post on quora asking how to handle when players don't show up for your games... here's my reply...

That’s a continuous challenge, isn’t it? I have a couple of thoughts. First you need to figure out why people aren’t showing up. Is it just random life-stuff among busy people? Or could it be your game is just not drawing them in, and they’re too nice to say so? If the latter then you need to up your GM Level and start providing a better game. And that, of course, can be a challenge when you’re not sure what you’re doing that could be improved. And often players themselves don’t know the answer to that either. So, as a rule of them, keep games tight, action oriented, and don’t let the players get bogged down in tiresome conversations about “what should we do”… always be ready to throw them into the action again, and keep things exciting for the players. Even a TPK is better than an evening spent debating about Door #1, Door #2, or Door #3.

One of the problems I’ve had along the way was a rule I concocted years ago that I thought seemed reasonable, but turned out to be not-so-great. If a player didn’t show, then my rule was that their character would go kind of inert. They’d be there, they’d fight if necessary, but they would not initiate actions, or offer useful advice, or demand their due, or make crazy things happen, even if their player would. This was because I felt that if I did so as GM I might play their character “wrong” (ie, they’d conclude that they’d never have played it that way), and if the character died in the process they’d be upset. So the safe bet was to follow my rule.

However, after a awhile I realized that this was a crap rule. The result was that whenever players didn’t show up they characters would go limp, and the story would drag, the players at the table might flounder around feeling demoralized and confused about stuff that the missing character knows but they don't remember, ... and so it would as often as not turn into a cesspool of “what should we do?”

So, I have a new rule, and it’s much cooler. If you don’t make the game then I play your character the way I think he or she Should be played. Mwahaah!  All the zest and creativity I can put into it, I will do! I will put a minor shield of protection around the character, but not enough to save them from the Fate of the Fumble, nor will I have them hold back on what’s on their mind. Sometimes they even turn out to be more awesome than ever because some players themselves hold back for various reasons (fear of losing them being the most common). However the player usually plays the Character - I’ll play it that way to the hilt. The games are much more fun that way, and I can actually use the non-player-present characters to spice things up and add an element of “OMG!” to the game that might not even be there if they did show up. So if you don’t show, you take the risk your character will do something kinda crazy, and maybe even get killed. So… it’s a good idea to show up. And lots more fun for everyone when you do. :) That’s my new style. It’s much better this way, believe me.

Of course, like everything else, this new rule has to be taken with a grain of salt... or rather it should be applied within reason, like a good spice in the right season. While I think it's much better than my former rule, it carries the risk that I might over do it. So while that's my new approach, I also try to keep it from becoming too much of "a thing".  But when the time is right and I think the missing Player Character should stand up and do something - well, by golly, they do!  And that's how I roll.  :)

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Thoughts on Literary RPG Stories - Part 2

In response to a comment made on my original blog entry on this topic, I want to present my thoughts on Railroading. It seems that I didn't cover this point originally, though I really should have.

The comment was as follows:


Ian Borchardt (Reverance Pavane)


One of the ways of avoiding the problem of random chance killing your protagonists in a literary-based RPG is not to front-load the characters as the protagonists of the story. That is the story will develop as the players play, so any death demotes a character to having actually been a minor character in the story.

That is instead of generating the exiled Prince, destined to regain his throne, at the start of the adventure sequence, reveal this previously unknown fact as the game continues, for the character that has taken the lead in the party (and looks like they will survive). Similar flashbacks can retcon how the party formed, an the roles of the other characters.

And if, the principal characters of your planned drama die (or decide to do something completely different), don't be afraid to change the story you are trying to tell to suit this. Perhaps it becomes a revenge drama or a love story instead.

[For myself I find the idea of plot immunity abhorrent, and there is nothing that is more likely to spoil my fun at the table as a player. As a game master, I want to hear the story that my players tell, rather than the story I want to tell. By that's my persoal bias, and other people's will vary.]



My reply, and the point of this post, is...

Regarding Railroading vs Open Ended Narrative ...

As for the question of running the game so that it results in the story that the Gamemaster has in mind... actually, that's another topic that should be addressed. What I don't want to do, nor do I try to do in my own games, is have a vision of what the end of the story will be. The only thing I want to know as GM is what has happened, and what is currently happening, and what might happen in the next game session. The reason i take this approach is to avoid the issue of Railroading. And yes, I'm with you on that. I don't care to be Railroaded along a defined storyline set by the GM as a Player. Nor do I want to drag my Players along a story line that I devised. Rather, I want to set the foundations of the story with a history, and NPCs who have their own motives, objectives, moral stances, and then let the players interact within the world freely. The technique of getting to the Story End is one of tying up loose ends, and, if the adventurer's survive (in most cases at least some survive in my games, and not uncommonly the majority of them do), then to see them arrive back home where the came from and take up their lives again.

So what I don't do as GM is say "First they will do this, then they will do that, then having achieved X they will then need to go get Y, and finally the grand climax will happen with Z. The end."

Nope. Not at all. What I do as GM instead is say "The history of the place is such and such. There are x forces at work. A is trying to do this. B is trying to do that. C wishes to do the same as B, but is thwarted by D, who opposes the objectives of both B and C. D will help A if he can. And now in the little town of Hamfest is a family of swine herders, of whom our heroes will emerge. They start the story doing chores for their parents, swilling pigs, hunting rabbits, fighting wolves, and staving off starvation. Then one day ..."

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Combat and Smart Play

In very thoughtful recently posted video on Combat in RPGs I was inspired to consider how I handle combat and talk a little bit about it.


This was my comment:

For me Combat is the "Game" aspect of my RPG GMing. It's where the dice become Fate and Destiny. However, my rules are such that characters can, if they plan ahead, or are clever people, augment their chances of success by exercising what I call "Smart Play". So if there's a scene where the guards are heard clamoring down the corridor one group of players might ignore them in their pursuit of treasure until the guards burst through the doorway. Their odds in this case are normal. Another group, lets say, panics when they hear the sound and start arguing and a few of them try to run into an adjacent room. This group's odds are lower and they may get negative modifiers on the initial round of combat because they're in a state of panic. Another group might quickly assemble around the doorway with weapons drawn and with the thief hiding behind the door so that he can get a backstab in at the right moment. This group will get bonus attack level modifiers for being prepared, and are more likely to win the initiative in the first round because the guards may be surprised. For me the last group represents what I think of as "Smart Play", and those guys augment their chances of success. Now does this have much to do with role playing? Yup. In my opinion it does. I have some great players. They don't meta game. If they're low level dumb dumbs with a thimble of intelligence between them, my players will play their characters that way - and they'll faithfully play the group that panics. And it will be fun and funny, and we'll have a ball. But if they're playing the highly skilled veterans then that group will be exercising "Smart Play", and it will be neat and effective and they've got a good chance of achieving their goals. And there will probably be some laughs along the way, because they're witty as hell. At any rate, that's my concept of "Smart Play" and a little bit about how that plays out in my game.

Sunday, June 25, 2017

On the 4th Dimension and Beyond

Those of you who may have been following the Whitewode Campaign may have noticed along the way references to a certain class of creatures known (euphemistically) as "Time Beasts". I do not wish to go into what they are at this point. However, here is a mental exercise for those who may be curious as to what the ramifications of their existence may mean in relation to recent events in the Campaign. I am referring to, of course, Hermel's most recent encounter with a Time Beast, and his subsequent projection "Out of Time".

Here are some thoughts, based on this video:



If a point is a coordinate in space, then it has no existence unless it has an aspect of time (aka duration). But the concept of Space-Time suggests that Space and Time are actually two aspects of the same thing... the same fabric, if you will. Space and Time are not distinguishable, except as a matter of point of view. A 0 dimension object is a point, which exists in Space-Time.

Therefore, there is no need for a 4th Dimension to be defined as Time, as that is already accounted for due to the existence of the 0 dimension being situated somewhere in Space-Time (or it simply is an idea / theory without existence). If this is the case, then the 4th dimension as a Tesseract still makes sense as an object existing in Space-Time, and we are to understand that it is an object that is at right angles to the cube.

The problem is that by considering Time the 4th dimension, which leads to the next idea, that the duration of the universe from beginning to end should be considered the 5th dimension, which would encompass the infinite possibilities. If this is the case, then how can we go beyond the 5th dimension at all?  And in this case, what is the meaning of the "right angle to the original object" aspect of the dimension, which is how we define the first 3 dimensions? It loses context and meaning because time is not "at right angles" to anything because time is not located in space (therefore it can not be referred to in terms of spacial directions) but is one of the aspects of Space-Time, or the framework in which all objects have their existence.

So it seems to me that we take a wrong turn when we start considering the 4th Dimension as Time. Instead, if we continue along the trajectory of the idea of dimensions being "at right angles" to the previous dimensions object, we get tesseracts, and beyond that more exotic shapes, which maintains consistency with the first part of the theory of dimensions.

We already have a very hard time imagining a tesseract. So shapes at higher dimensions than that would become even more difficult to visualize. That, however, is not an impediment to their existence, but instead an impediment of our ability to imagine. That said, if we can postulate a tesseract as a 4th dimensional shape, then we can also posit 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, etc, dimensional shapes simply by expressing them as "at right angles to" the former dimension. So the 8th dimensional shape is at right angles to the 7th dimensional shape. This could, I would imagine, go on infinitely as there is no limit to the number of right angles that could potentially exist. If this is so, then there are infinite dimensions... all of which would be referenced as objects within the Space-Time continuum, which itself has an infinite capacity for dimensions to exist within it because there can be no limit to the number of right angles possible. If this is the case, then Space-Time is infinite.

If Space-Time is infinite then when did it begin? When does it end? What about the Big Bang? Does the universe ungulate over infinite Space-Time with an infinite series of Big Bangs? If Space-Time is one thing, and not two things, then is it possible to have Space without Time, or Time without Space? If not, then what is the difference between Space and Time exactly, if they are really two aspects of the same thing? Should we consider Space and Time to be at right angles to one another (ie - two dimensions) of another more fundamental "fabric"? If so, what is that Fabric? What are its characteristics? Where did it originate?

These are the kinds of questions that the students of Doctor Krumpus' class were examining in their Advanced Cosmology Class, when our heroes arrived at Whitewode. Unfortunately, due to disturbances outside of their control the class was cut short, the final exam truncated for that reason, and some of the more exotic implications were "left to the students to explore on their own time".

Make of this what you will.


Saturday, June 17, 2017

Trials and Tribulations of ASP.Net Hosting Services Migration

Warning: Super Boring Stuff Ahead.



If you're not into the Technical Geekery of Web Hosting feel free to ignore this post. But it is part of the process I am going through to establish Elthos.com in the world, and so I think it's fair game to post about it.  After all, it's directly related to the successful implementation of Elthos. 

And besides, I have a question for you Geekmeisters out there...

What is your impression of the Technical Support as demonstrated below?

A) Not bad.
B) Not great but average for the industry.
C) Pretty bad, but it can be lived with.
D) No... This is the Proverbial Red Flag - Don't walk; Run to the exit!

Some additional factors to consider:

When I called for phone support the technician informed me they only do technical support by phone in the case of emergencies.  He also mentioned that they only have 5% of their users on the Windows hosting platform, and they are 95% geared towards supporting Linux based implementations.  He also dropped that "Windows always has problems, but everything with Linux is simple and easy."

That leads me to wonder if they have any support staff who actually knows what they are doing with Windows Servers.  Sure it's different than Linux, granted. But a competent Windows Admin can handle Windows based issues just as well as a competent Linux Admin can handle Linux based issues.  It's a matter of knowing the domain.  I got the impression they offer ASP.Net hosting as a second though, and have very little experience with it.

On the other hand it has been a struggle all along to find a non-EIG hosting company that even attempts to support ASP.Net, let alone one with the various services and features that InterServer offers, especially at their price of $5 / month, which is very reasonable. OR ... is this one of those "too good to be true" scenarios and I should bag it, stick with (EIG owned) Arvixe and just plan on spending more than I want for SSL, and plan on migrating sometime before Arvixe implodes (EIG does that to web hosting companies - I know, I've gone through 4 of them... all consumed and destroyed by EIG one after the other).

What do you think?  Would you stick with these guys?  Or stay with your current (soon to perish from asphyxiation) host and keep looking around?  Thoughts?  Recommendations?  Laughter?

Anyway, here's the text with the important technical bits redacted... For the record:


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Posted on: June 17, 2017 1:36:39PM

Thanks for the update

Please let us know if you need any further assistance

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com

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Posted on: June 17, 2017 1:35:10PM

I guess that is the best InterServer can do. I will decide what I want to do about this later this evening when I get back to my office.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer

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Posted on: June 17, 2017 1:19:59PM

We can solve your technical errors through our ticket system , such technical issues should not be solved over phone support

Yes to install Let`s encrypt SSL certificate you need to point your website to our dns servers

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com

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Posted on: June 17, 2017 12:52:27PM

The issue is that I need to work through whatever issues may be pending with the ASP.Net site which is the MythosMachine.elthos.com subdomain. I would prefer to do this before switching the domain to your dns servers if at all possible in order to mitigate downtime on the site.

The problem is that when I try to use this link to test the ASP.Net site

http://xx.xx.xxx.xxx/plesk-site-preview/mythosmachine.elthos.com/xx.xx.xxx.xxx/

I get the bad gateway error:

Bad Gateway
Web server received an invalid response while acting as a gateway or proxy server.

So it seems from what you are saying there is no way I can test the site before going live with it. This appears to be due to the fact that the subdomain is an ASP.Net site which requires SSL, but SSL can not be installed without changing name servers. This puts me in an awkward position. I am concerned that even after we change the name servers, and install SSL, I will then be facing any number of configuration issues with the site, that each will need to be resolved in order before the site can function properly. I think we are not that far from resolving the remaining configuration issues, but it could take a few laps around the park before everything is setup correctly. My biggest concern is that the turnaround time for the tickets ranges between 10 minutes at the best to 6 hours at the worst, and I fear this will take more than a few more corrections on the ASP.Net site before we have everything correctly in place. I'm wondering if there is anything you can do to expedite this process? For example, could I get dedicates phone support to drive through any remaining issues with the ASP.Net implementation? Or can you suggest any other means by which to expedite the resolution process? Thanks.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer

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Posted on: June 17, 2017 12:40:37PM

Your website is loading at preview URL http://xx.xx.xxx.xxx/plesk-site-preview/www.elthos.com/xx.xx.xxx.xxx/

To install let`s encrypt SSL , You need to point your domain to our dns servers

xxxxxxxxxa.xxxxxx.net
xxxxxxxxxb.xxxxxx.net

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com

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Posted on: June 17, 2017 12:38:00PM

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 17, 2017 10:45:45AM

Your website is loading at preview URL http://xx.xx.xxx.xxx/plesk-site-preview/www.elthos.com/xx.xx.xxx.xxx/

To install let`s encrypt SSL , You need to point your domain to our dns servers

xxxxxxxxxa.xxxxxx.net
xxxxxxxxxb.xxxxxx.net

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 17, 2017 8:00:48AM

Hi Techie 2,
So I'm not sure how to handle this. At this point I can not preview the site to ensure that it's working. Apparently in order to do so I need to have Let's Encrypt installed. But I can't do that because, if I understand you correctly, the site is still pointing to the Arvixe servers. Is that correct? If so, I'm not sure how to handle this efficiently. I don't want to point to the new servers at InterServer until Ive tested the site to make sure it works properly, but apparently, from the sequence of instructions so far, I don't see how to do that. Can you offer advice on what steps to take at this point? Thanks again.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 17, 2017 5:42:53AM

In order to install Let's Encrypt certificate, domain should be resolving to the IP of the server from where the certificate is being installed.
As I can see, the domain elthos.com is still pointing to different dns, however it actually resolves to IP xxx.xx.xx.xxx

Techie 2

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 11:10:57PM

We will update you once SSL installation completed

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 11:07:20PM

Ok. I look forward to getting this finished. Thank you.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 11:05:14PM

We will look into this let`s encryot installation error with Plesk technical support

Error: Let's Encrypt SSL certificate installation failed: Challenge marked as invalid. Details: Fetching http://www.elthos.com/.well-known/acme-challenge/ Timeout

We will update you once it is fixed

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 10:08:24PM

I tried adding Let's Encrypt first to Elthos.com. I selected both checked options for www and email. I got this error:

Error: Let's Encrypt SSL certificate installation failed: Challenge marked as invalid. Details: Invalid response from http://elthos.com/


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 10:04:05PM

Thank you for your advice. Much appreciated. I will go ahead and add it as you suggest.

Techie 4
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 10:00:02PM

Hi

You need to install the SSL certificate separately on each sub domain. For ASP.NET sites, it is possible that the web.config file might cause issues for Lets Encrypt to parse the verification file for issuing SSL certificates. Hence, you can temporarily rename web.config before enabling Let's Encrypt for this site


Regards,
Techie 4,
Support team


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 9:55:39PM

Ok perhaps that will resolve it. I will try. But I have a question. Since I have elthos.com as a wordpress site, and mythosmachine.elthos.com as an asp.net site which is the subdomain for elthos.com ... do I install the Let's Encrypt only on the elthos.com site, and it propagates to the subdomain, or do I need to install it on both? Thanks again.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 9:51:05PM

Your subdomain is loading at http://mythosmachine.elthos.com/

You can install free SSL (let`s encrypt) in Plesk panel

Kind Regards,

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 9:25:56PM

Yes, after 45 minutes the browser is still "waiting for response from mythosmachine.elthos.com..."
I tried re-cycling the Application Pool and stopping and starting it again, but that does not appear to have worked. I do get this error however:

This site can’t be reached

The webpage at https://mythosmachine.elthos.com/ might be temporarily down or it may have moved permanently to a new web address.
ERR_SPDY_PROTOCOL_ERROR

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 8:51:55PM

You are welcome

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 8:46:17PM

Thank you Sam. Will do.

As for the MythosMachine.Elthos.com link ... I am no longer getting the ASP.NET State service error ... however, when I attempt to load the page it hangs on "waiting for MythosMachine.Elthos.com..." ... I've tried several times in three browsers. It simply hangs indefinitely without error, but also without loading the page. I've waited about 20 minutes. If an error does come up I will send it along, but in the meantime, do you happen to know what might cause that? Thanks!

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 8:33:37PM

This login to Plesk panel , Please create your custom FTP login in Plesk panel

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 8:30:49PM

In the email I received when I created the ASP.Net Windows Hosting plan I got these credentials for FTP:

Your UserName : xxxxxxx
Your Password : xxxxxxxxx
FTP URL : ftp://xx.xx.xxx.xxx

However, I do not seem able to log in with these credentials either by ftp program nor command prompt. Can you verify that these credentials are correct please?

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 7:54:38PM

ASP.NET State Service should be and running on your server

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 5:47:44PM

Ah. ok. I see. That works.

I get an error about the ASP State Server.

System.Web.HttpException: Unable to make the session state request to the session state server. Please ensure that the ASP.NET State service is started and that the client and server ports are the same. If the server is on a remote machine, please ensure that it accepts remote requests by checking the value of HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services\aspnet_state\Parameters\AllowRemoteConnection. If the server is on the local machine, and if the before mentioned registry value does not exist or is set to 0, then the state server connection string must use either 'localhost' or '127.0.0.1' as the server name.

Techie 4
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 5:38:41PM

Hi

You will use the sub domain mythosmachine.elthos.com in the browser and it should point to the new IP address (overrides DNS resolution due to the hosts entries) and verify if the site is working

Regards,
Techie 4,
Support team


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 5:36:33PM

I changed the host file as directed. However, that did not resolve the issue. I still get the same error message:

Bad Gateway

Web server received an invalid response while acting as a gateway or proxy server.

http://xx.xx.xxx.xxx/plesk-site-preview/mythosmachine.elthos.com/xx.xx.xxx.xxx/

I have double checked the hosts file to ensure the change was saved correctly and it was.
Techie 4
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 5:13:12PM

Hi

I see that the sub domain is using ASP.NET pages, the preview URL function uses the default plesk application pool for the website. Hence, I would suggest you open c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts file (Windows) or /etc/hosts (Linux/Mac) as administrator/root user on your computer and add the below entries to the file.

xx.xx.xxx.xxx mythosmachine.elthos.com

This will point the sub domain to the server temporarily without changing the Ip address for the sub domains. When the sub domain works, you can remove the entries from the file and update the Name servers or Ip address for this sub domain

Regards,
Techie 4,
Support team


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 5:01:27PM

Thank you. It is working now. I'm not sure how that happened, but thanks for your help. Much obliged.

I have one more problem with the MythosMachine.Elthos.com com in preview. I get this error:

Bad Gateway
Web server received an invalid response while acting as a gateway or proxy server.

http://xx.xx.xxx.xxx/plesk-site-preview/mythosmachine.elthos.com/xx.xx.xxx.xxx/

Thanks again for your help.

Techie 4
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 4:49:57PM

Hi

I reset the database user passsword to aDC=xxxxxxxxxx and the site is loading now


Regards,
Techie 4,
Support team


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 4:23:15PM

I have confirmed them. Please see what you can make of it.

db: xxxxxxx
user: xxxxxxx
password: xxxxxxxxxx

Techie 4
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 3:59:41PM

Hello

Please confirm the database user name, password and database name you set up in wp-config.php so we can try correcting the database details


Regards,
Techie 4,
Support team


Vbwyrde@yemail.com

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Posted on: June 16, 2017 2:30:06PM

PS - the preview URL is:

http://xx.xx.xxx.xxx/plesk-site-preview/elthos.com/xx.xx.xxx.xxx/


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 2:29:17PM

Hi Techie 2,

Thanks. I figured out how to get the ProfessionalGamemasterSociety wordpress database installed and that is now working in preview. I'm currently working on the Elthos wordpress database but having a problem with it.

First when I tried to create the user account, the original password for the account wasn't accepted due to disallowed character in the password string (it will not take a quote " as a character, apparently). So I changed the password and was able to both create the user and then load the database and fill it. I can query it with the mySql administration utility and it works fine and I can see the data.

I then went ahead and changed the password for the database in the wp-config.php file and saved that. It now has the new password for the elthos user.

However, when I go to preview the site, I get the same message as before:

Error establishing a database connection

As the ProfessionalGamemasterSociety is working, I think I have the correct steps, and I'm wondering if having to change the original password to a new one may have caused a problem. I'm hoping you can help me resolve this issue. Thanks.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 9:59:33AM

1-You need to restore your wordpress database backup , backup zip files are giving error to open from our end

2- changing db name will not affect using Enterprise Manager but you need to change db name in web.config database connection string if any

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 9:43:24AM

Just so I'm clear on this ... are you going to do the database restore for the word press site? Or does the free migration only include file transfers?

As for the Import. I followed the directions given in your link. I know it shouldn't change the database name. That's why I'm asking about it.

You didn't give me any information on how I should change the name at this point. Does it matter if I use Enterprise Manager on my end to change the name? Or will that mess up some back end feature and screw things up for the site?

Thanks for your help and advice.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 9:38:17AM

1-Restoring SQL backup should not change SQL db name

You need to follow steps here https://www.interserver.net/tips/kb/import-mssql-database-windows/

2-Error in your website "Error establishing a database connection" , It seems that your wordpress database is not restored and connected yet



Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 9:12:56AM

As for the ProfessionalGamemasterSociety.com site, when I try to preview it I get the error:

Error establishing a database connection

http://xx.xx.xxx.xxx/plesk-site-preview/professionalgamemastersociety.com/xx.xx.xxx.xxx/

What needs to be done to get this site up and running?
Thanks!


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 8:13:30AM

Thank you Techie 2.

Question: Any idea why the import process changed the name of my database to ElthosCo_ ? And what the best / safe way I can change that to it's correct name, Elthos_ODS? I don't want to change it in Enterprise Manager (which seems to be the only way available that I can find so far) if that is going to corrupt the view in Plesk (ie - I don't want to risk inadvertently mess up any backend systems by changing the name in Enterprise Manager). Thanks.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 16, 2017 5:47:55AM

You will be able to access MyLittleAdmin after pointing your websites to our dns servers

xxxxxxxxxxxxxa.net
xxxxxxxxxxxxxb.net

Kind Regards,

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 11:14:08PM

Hi Techie 2,
I have imported the first database. That went ok. however, the process of importing the database renamed it to elthosco_ for some reason. Also when I try to get into the MyLittleAdmin I get this error:

This site can’t be reached

The connection was reset.
Try:
Checking the connection
Checking the proxy and the firewall
ERR_CONNECTION_RESET

That said, I can access the database via Enterprise Manager with no problem. I'm simply not sure if I should rename the database to the correct name via Enterprise Manager, or wait until we resolve the MyLittleAdmin issue and use that to (I would expect) rename it that way. What do you think?

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 10:45:30PM

After creating your SQL databases in Plesk panel

You can connect remotely to your MSSQL database using SQL server management studio

Download SQL Server Management Studio

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=29062


xx.xx.xxx.xxx\MSSQLSERVER2012

Authentication : SQL server authentication

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 10:38:57PM

Thank you Techie 2. Can I link to the SQL Server instance from my Management Studio? Or can I only go through the Plesk interface at this point?

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 10:28:32PM

1-We are not able to open any of your SQL databases zip files

a) Elthos_ODS.zip
b) Elthos_ODS_A.zip
c) Elthos_YAF.zip

2-To restore your MSSQL databases backup , please upload it in .BAK format to your home directory using ftp and we will restore for you

How to import MSSQL database in Plesk panel

https://www.interserver.net/tips/kb/import-mssql-database-windows/

3-You need to create your SQL databases in Plesk control panel https://pleskxxxxxxx:xxxx with the same SQL usernames and passwords

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 10:10:32PM

Thank you Techie 2. Will you also be restoring the three Databases as listed below?

Set up 3 SQL Server 2012 Databases:
a) Elthos_ODS.zip
b) Elthos_ODS_A.zip
c) Elthos_YAF.zip
Please ensure the user accounts are working.
Please send me required credentials so I can link to the SQL Server 2012 using MS Database Management Studio and administer my 3 databases.

Also, as the ProfessionalGamemasterSociety.com is WordPress site, is it working in wordpress at this time, or does further configuration work need to be done on the server for that?

Same question for Elthos.com

Thanks again!

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 9:23:12PM

Your websites files transfer completed and restored to home directory

elthos.com to >> \httpdocs

professionalgamemastersociety.com to >> \professionalgamemastersociety.com

mythosmachine.elthos.com to >> \mythosmachine.elthos.com

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 5:21:45PM

ok thank you.

-- Techie 2 3S
InterServer

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Posted on: June 15, 2017 5:15:28PM

Your websites elthos.com and professionalgamemastersociety.com files transfer started to our server

Backup files are not opening

I will update you once transfer is completed

Techie 2


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 4:59:22PM

Lastly is the ProfessionalGamemasterSociety.com site which is also wordpress and goes into the ProfessionalGamemasterSociety.com domain on InterServer.

ftp://xxxxx@ftp.xxxxx.xxxxxx.xxxxxx/professionalgamemastersociety.com

Also using the same username and password as the other two.


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 4:54:00PM

The previous link is for the Elthos.com wordpress site.

This link is for the MythosMachine.Elthos.com subdomain which is the ASP site.

ftp://xxxxx@ftp.xxxxx.xxxxxx.xxxxxx/elthos.com

They both use the same user name and password.


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 4:50:33PM

the control panel at Arvixe offers a way to zip the files for download. I used their method and those files you have are the result. So I'm not sure if they are using a zip compression that is not longer compatible with Windows or not, though on my machine here they open without any problems (Windows 10).

That said, you can use the Arvixe control panel here:


ftp://xxxxx@ftp.xxxxx.xxxxxx.xxxxxx/elthos.com
user: xxxxxxxxx
Psw: xxxxxxxxx

Perhaps something got corrupted in the transfer. Does that happen with all of the files, or just the one you showed in the png image?

Techie 3
InterServer


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 4:05:55PM

We are getting an error on some zip files:

--- Screenshot -- Windows Can Not Open Zip File - Error ---

Any where we can redownload them from?

Techie 3
InterServer, Inc


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 10:42:44AM

I should also mention that this ticket is part of an ongoing migration. The original ticket was passed over to billing (instead of a new billing ticket created) which caused me to have to create a new ticket to continue the migration. Due to a lack of coordination I am now having to re-initiate the migration instead of it continuing as a smooth process. This has caused a delay overnight while the migration has been paused due to this. The original Migration ticket number is: XXX-816-18899. I will hope that you will coordinate this so that there are no further delays. Thank you.


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 10:39:04AM

Call In Pin: XXXXXX
Last Invoice ID and Amount: XXXXXX $54.00

Techie 1
InterServer

Posted on: June 15, 2017 1:25:57AM

Hello,

To initiate migration please provide one of the following for verification :

- Account PIN (located on your account homepage in https://my.interserver.net)
- Last invoice ID and amount



Kind regards,

Techie 1
InterServer, Inc


Vbwyrde@yemail.com


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Posted on: June 15, 2017 0:45:10AM

Due to a billing issue the prior ticket with these instructions is in the Billing queue. Please continue with the migration as per these instructions:

As for where to go from here:

1. Set up the Elthos.com website (this is a WordPress Site)
--> Files: Elthos_bak_20170613.zip

2. Set up the MythosMachine.Elthos.com (subdomain) (ASP.Net 4.0)
--> Files: MythosMachine.Elthos_bak_20170613.zip

3. Set up 3 SQL Server 2012 Databases:
a) Elthos_ODS.zip
b) Elthos_ODS_A.zip
c) Elthos_YAF.zip
Please ensure the user accounts are working.
Please send me required credentials so I can link to the SQL Server 2012 using MS Database Management Studio and administer my 3 databases.

4. Set up IIS 7 Configuration (I may have to do that part, I need a long session timeout for this application)

5. Set up the ProfessionalGamemasterSociety Website on the ProfessionalGamemasterSociety.com domain (it is a Wordpress site)
--> PGMS_bak_20170613.zip

Thank you very much! I look forward to getting this up and running!